Hints from Heloise

Dear Readers: Here are some safety tips from the FDA about microwave use:


- Don't run an empty microwave.


- Don't heat liquids longer than recommended. Super-heated water can cause serious burns.


- Don't put anything metal in the microwave. This includes aluminum foil or hidden metal, like gold-edged plates.


- Use glass, ceramic and only plastic containers that are labeled for cooking in a microwave.


- Always follow the manufacturer's directions in the manual. - Heloise


MASK WASHING


Dear Heloise: When I come in from my daily morning walks, I wash my cloth face mask and hands together with pleasant smelling hand soap.


When I wash my cloth face masks in the washing machine, I put them in a delicates bag. - Mary H., Arlington, Vir.


SQUIRRELS BE GONE


Dear Heloise: My neighbor decided to take up bird and squirrel feeding with feeders in his front yard. Last December, I got a new car, which I parked in my driveway. Within two weeks, the squirrels had gotten to my car's wires, causing $1,600 in damage.


My dealer who did the repairs suggested putting moth balls under the hood, because squirrels don't like the smell. Bingo! It is seven months later, and no more problem. If your readers have a squirrel problem, I highly recommend moth balls. - John in Fla.


DRYER LINT


Dear Heloise: I use my used dryer sheets to clean the filter in my clothes dryer. It picks up all the lint on the mesh and on the felt strip along the outer edge. Once cleaned, just toss the sheet. - Vicky in Virginia


Vicky, the dryer sheet does work well, but it may leave a residue from the softeners on your lint filter. When you notice a gunky buildup, gently scrub the screen with hot water and dishwashing soap. Rinse and let dry thoroughly before putting it back. - Heloise


SALT SCRUB


Dear Heloise: I read your column in The Villages Daily Sun every day. I've had great success in cleaning coffee/tea stained mugs and my drip coffee pot with salt. I just sprinkle on and rub with either a dishcloth or a scrubby.


Also, it works for cleaning and shining pots, cookie sheets, aluminum oven pans and glass oven dishes. They turn out sparkling clean. - Helen T., The Villages, Fla.


NOW THAT'S A STRETCH


Dear Heloise: While getting dressed one morning, I got a snag in one of the legs of my pantyhose. A light bulb went off as I was taking them off - stretchy legs ... elastic-like. Hey, what if I cut them in 1-inch strips across the legs and cut that in half? Voila! A pair of stretchy strips for the COVID masks.


I made a couple for my husband and daughter, and they both said these were more comfortable on their ears than the elastic! The pair I cut up made enough strips for 16 masks! - Elsie B., via email


Send a money-saving or time saving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5001, or you can fax it to 1-210-HELOISE or email it to Heloise@Heloise.com. I can't answer your letter personally but will use the best hints received in my column.


Distributed by King Features Syndicate Inc.